Big Picture View (Issue 715)

In which we are urged to see the big picture view of our territories and accounts before losing ourselves in daily sales tasks.

New Year’s eve broke cold for Boston. While afternoon temperatures were relatively manageable, by 6:30 PM the temperature on the Boston Common was in the high teens with a light breeze. Cold! My wife and I with friends waded into the First Night crowd surrounding the Frog Pond. Despite the cold, there were people EVERYWHERE, many dressed in wild hats, capes, or other clothing they probably wouldn’t wear to work the following Monday.

The sea of shadowy gray tree trunks, heads in hats, and bundled bodies around us obscured our vision. Huddling out of the wind in front of a garish yellow brightly lit Fried Dough stand, through the phone-wielding, picture snapping masses, we could see the tops of several ice sculptures and a narrow bit of the ice skating exhibition on the Frog Pond.

We climbed Flagstaff Hill behind us. From 20 feet higher, the view was little better. Several hundred other people had had the same idea. Impossible to see more than a few feet of ground.

Just before 7 PM, we met other friends on Tremont Street, on the long Southeast border of the Common, and rode the elevators up to their condo overlooking the Boston Common. Almost 300 feet above the fried dough stand, we could now look down on the Common seeing clearly the evolving, milling shape of the crowd now looking like ants in brightly colored coats washed in the cold gray light of Boston Common lamp posts.

As we lifted our eyes, we could see the ebbs and flows of First Night celebrants and automobiles through the streets from the gold State House dome on the right across the river to Cambridge and a half a mile or more down Boylston Street and Newberry Street.

When the 7:00 pm fireworks began, they burst at our level or just slightly above us, three hundred yards away, illuminating the entire Boston Common even more clearly. It was my first time looking “out” at fireworks, even-steven, rather than looking “up.” ‘T’was a grand view, a big picture from a high place.

And now we begin our sales years. On a day-to-day basis, we are so busy with transactions and tasks that we shuffle as if with the bodies bundled from one fried dough stand to the next, looking up from time to time to get our bearings. Thus, developing “the wide picture from a high place” through Territory Plans and Account Plans may be helpful.

Our wide view may change during the year just as the view from our condominium perch will change season to season. That doesn’t diminish the beauty of the view or the power of seeing things from the top down so we can choose our next moves wisely.


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